How to Make a Stained Glass Window Yourself

How to Make a Stained Glass Window Yourself

Making a stained glass window is a great way to spruce up your home with something beautiful and unique. Have you been wanting to hand craft a stunning butterfly stained glass window design? How about a striking and colorful mosaic? This article will detail the process of making your own stained glass window, from design to installation.


Stained glass comes in many shapes and sizes, so don’t feel intimidated by the process. It is quite simple and all materials can be purchased online or in a craft store. Most stained glass uses small glass squares called panels for each window. Stained glass can be made with small 3/8 inch or 1/2 inch thick decorative cut glass, a roll of 2 X 4 inches or larger 3/4 inch thick solid core pressure-treated wood, or thicker pieces of tempered glass. Decorative and solid core panes are used for windows that will be hung and do not have to support significant weight. Tempered glass is used for windows that will be placed in a wall and have to support substantial weight (such as bathroom mirrors).


The decoration process is the most difficult part. Begin by searching online or using an old picture of something you’d like to recreate. Print out a copy on regular paper and place it in front of you. Draw a grid over the picture, each box measuring 2 X 4 inches or larger (depending on how thick your pieces will be). The square grid gives you a guide to work with when cutting pieces of glass.

Define the shape of the design by drawing a circle at the center of your window. The size of the circle depends on the size of your piece of glass art. For example, if you are using decorative glass that will be hung on a wall, then only draw the window in half and leave a 4 inch space around it for ventilation.


Once your stained glass is ready to go, you will have to install it in your home. The installation process involves hanging the stained glass on a wall or placing it in a window frame. Decide which type your window will be and when it will be used. Apply adhesive to the backside of each cut piece and place it into your window frame as if it were a picture frame. Apply heavy pressure to the backside of the pieces so that they are flat against the wall. Once you have all your stained glass pieces in place, apply a generous coat of matte sealant to prevent the pieces from discoloring.


Decide how much you are willing to pay for stained glass. Many people make the mistake of spending far more than is required to create a spectacular window for their home. If you want your stained glass to last, use thicker glass. If the window will be in a high temperature location such as a shower area, then thinner glass is fine, but if the window will be in a cooler place such as an office, then go with thicker pieces.

Final Thoughts 

Stained glass windows are a beautiful way to spruce up your home and have a focal point in any room. You may need to pay extra for thicker pieces of glass, but the beauty of your creation will be worth it. Remember that you can make any design with stained glass, so think outside the box!